5 Tricks to get your kids eating their least favourite veggies
The challenge of getting kids to eat their veggies is well known. Save for the occasional child who actually enjoys their vegetables, most kids seem to develop a dislike for them at one point or another.
The top five vegetables that are most frequently greeted with a sour face, or even spat out if you try to hide them under a large lettuce leaf or a mound of mashed potatoes, are:
- Brussels sprouts
Luckily for mums and dads, there are a few tricks to getting your children to eat (and perhaps even enjoy) these healthy, vitamin packed foods without needing to resort to bribery or threats of an early bedtime. Here they are, in no particular order:
Broccoli and cranberry salad
Cook the broccoli in boiling water until “al dente” – they appear a bright green colour and are not soggy. Drain and toss with a handful of dried cranberries, which will provide a sweet taste without the unhealthy sugar additive.
Add chopped up yellow capsicum and toss in a bowl with some Red Kellys Tasmania Tangy Traditional dressing, and leave in the refrigerator for an hour before serving.
Salad in a jar
This is a really fun idea and very practical if you are having a picnic or eating al fresco, as the kids get to shake up their own meal. You will need to collect a few jars (empty coffee ones are great) and get your children to decorate the outside of their own jars with their name. You also need to be able to wash out the insides, as you will be using these again and again.
For each jar, use a portion of quinoa, a sliced radish, some chopped cucumber, a sliced tomato, a handful of baby spinach leaves and some prawns, adding these a layer at a time. Add a dollop of Red Kellys Tasmania Creamy Caesar dressing, put the lids on, and let your kids have fun shaking up their own meal.
Dip and dunk
Children love brightly coloured things, and they also love to dip and dunk their food in a variety of sauces, so thinly slice red capsicum, carrots and cucumber for a very colourful mixture.
Get a brightly decorated bowl (or their own jar – see above suggestion) that will hold their Red Kellys Tasmania Cajun Ranch dressing, and they’ll have fun dipping their veggies and enjoying the mild smoky barbeque flavour that perfectly complements their greens.
Cook and learn
Getting children cooking from an early age is very important. Not only is cooking a skill for life, but it will also encourage kids to eat and enjoy even their least liked veggies, just because it was something they had a hand in cooking.
Depending on their age, your children may be able to prepare sprouts, and with supervision, cook them until still firm before tossing them in olive oil, salt and pepper, and putting them in the oven to roast. These can be served with Red Kellys Tasmania Basil & Garlic dressing if eaten as part of a hot salad, for example, and they will certainly taste a lot different from plain, soggy boiled sprouts.
Set a dinner date with kale
Not a fan of kale? Try this recipe. Cook bacon until crispy and set aside. Slice kale into thin ribbons, and knead for two minutes until leaves turn soft and bright green.
Toss the kale with some Red Kellys Tasmania Parmesan & Chive Potato or Creamy Caesar dressing, add sliced red onion, four pitted dates and chopped parsley, and stir through. Top with a poached egg and watch your child enjoy a taste sensation – they might not even realise it is kale that they’re eating!
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